Sunday, July 14, 2019

Turner Creek

Today we had a work party up at Bull/Jake, but it was really kind of thrown together at the last minute. It's been raining all week, and it stormed last night. We weren't sure who'd show up, if anyone, so we didn't go for anything too ambitious.

Last month, we'd started working Turner Creek toward the north, so we figured this month, we'd head south and see how far we could get in that direction. With any luck, we'd get to where we'd worked the previous month.

Turned out, we got a decent crew. Debbie and Nancy showed up, of course. They'd recently both driven up to Tennessee together, and both bought new trucks! A lady I'd met once before, named Francine showed up too. She lives off Jess Grizzle road, basically on the way in. I've driven by that road hundreds of times. Another lady showed up too, but I always forget her name. I worked with her husband last month. It seemed like they had an orange Subaru, but she drove up in a yellow one. "New car?" No. Turns out they have 2 of them, one orange, and one yellow! Ha!

There was a tree down partway across the road to the parking lot, so we ran up and cut it way back. By the time we got back to the cars, there were 3 more ladies hanging around. One was a trail runner named Elizabeth. The other two were her daughter and her daughter's friend, both of whom needed community service hours for school. Nice! Second month in a row we've had trail runners at the work parties.

All right!

After carpooling to the top end of the trail, we started working it south.

Right away we noticed that someone had worn in a new line bypassing the first downhill. We talked about covering it with debris, but... actually... Despite being user-created, it was, in fact, a more sustainable line, and we ended up just leaving it.

We broke up into groups of 2 and did that standard nicking, deberming, and restoring turnouts. I was working with the trail-runner's daughter, who's name also Liz (Elizabeth Jr.) Turns out she had a lot in common with Sophie - both in IB, both had taken a bunch of AP classes, both took IB/AP french, both needed community service hours for school, etc. She worked super hard. Like... Super hard. I was worried she might burn out, but no, she kept it going the entire time.

It was incredibly hot though. Actually, more humid than hot. Halfway through, 100% of my clothing was soaked. I didn't even want to get into my truck later.

We got a bunch done but had to knock off when it started thundering. Clear blue sky, but tons of thunder. It was like 11:55 anyway, and we often call it a day at noon, but we felt like we could have gotten more done. Nancy was especially reluctant to go and just kept cleaning up the corner we'd been working on, and finally telling us to go on and she'd catch up.

Back at the trucks, I ate the best apple I've had in forever, some delicious turtle brownies, and some chips. So good. That apple, especially. I got some Big D's Barbecue on the way home to top it all off.

When I got home, I unloaded the truck, showered, and slept for like 4 hours.

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